Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Ivyclad Ideas - Superhero Books

This is the first in a series of posts aimed at helping anyone joining my reading challenge to fill the board. Ivyclad Bingo permits basically any type of book: novel, ebook, audiobook, comic, manga... 

The following are not recommendations, they are suggestions.

(What's the difference?)

If I haven't read it, it's a suggestion.

If you want to sign up for the Ivyclad Bingo 2018 Challenge, there's still time! Just click here and follow the instructions.

Pretty Much Any Marvel or DC Comic

Technically superhero means the character (or a character) needs to have superpowers, but no one's going to come jumping down your throat if you happen to pick Black Widow, Batman, Ironman...

(The list goes on.)

 Anything Involving Magical Girls/Boys


Secret identity? Check. Magical powers? Check. Battle costume? Check. Magical Girls (and, more rarely, boys) are really a case of a superhero by any other name. The example I'm most familiar with is the Italian comic series W.I.T.C.H, which I read as a kid, but googling Magical Girls brings up plenty of other examples. Sailor Moon. Pretty Cure. Miraculous Ladybug.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29749085-wonder-womanThe DC Icons Books

These are written by some pretty big name authors: Leigh Bardugo, Marie Liu, Sarah J. Maas... They each focus on a different DC character so, if you're not much of a comic reader, here's a way to get your superhero fix in comic form. Catwoman's technically a villain but, like I said before, we're not going to be pedantic. If that's the one you want to read, you do you.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24885636-zeroes The Zeroes Series by Westerfeld Scott

YA novel series about six teenagers with superpowers. There are three of them out right now, which makes for quite the series binge of you're into that.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28421168-renegadesThe Renegades Series by Marissa Meyer

You've probably heard of Marissa Meyer's previous series The Lunar Chronicles. Renegades is her new one, about heroes and villains and revenge.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17182126-steelheartThe Reckoners Series by Brandon Sanderson

Epics vs Reckoners. Heroes vs Villains. And another superhero novel with a side order of hot, steaming revenge.

Flame On!

Who's your favourite superhero?

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Resolutions, Reviews, and Read-a-Thon Wrap-Up (Sunday Post #15)


Happy new year, nerds! 


It's been a shockingly productive January so far on the blog. Although, admittedly most of the productivity occurred pre-January because I've been drowning in essays. Remember guys, the schedule button is your friend!

News from the Reading Front

Before today, I'd only finished one book since New Year.

Good Wives by Louisa May Alcott - 3 stars - Review 

24hr Read-a-Thon Wrap-up

Today, books-and-cookies was hosting a 24hr readathon on Tumblr. I'd never taken part in a read-a-thon before, and I had a free day, so I figured why not?
Final Results - 
Books Read -
Pages Read: 322 

I was planning to read two manga books as well, and there's plenty of time remaining, but after finishing All the Crooked Saints I don't feel like picking anything else up. The ending was emotionally draining. Poor Daniel.

News from the Blogging Front

Calling all Ivyclad Bingo participants! Next week, I'm posting the first of the lists aimed at helping you find books to read for the challenge. Help for the superhero category is assembling on Tuesday.

News from the Net
 Happy Sunday! How's your 2018 looking?

Thursday, 11 January 2018

Louisa May Al-Quotes (Good Wives by Louisa May Alcott)

"She preferred imaginary heroes to real ones, because when tired of them, the former could be shut up in the tin kitchen till called for, and the latter were less manageable." - Louisa May Alcott, Good Wives 

It is a fancy of mine that the women of the past were running around behind the men's backs, cackling at their naivety. How else do you explain the inexplicable notion held historically that women had no sexuality? A glance over just one or two of the letters lying on the desks of certain bygone women would have relieved them of this delusion at once, and yet they laboured under it. For all its flaws, Good Wives contains some excellent quotes which show that we women are not so changed from from those who came before us. We've been saying the same things for centuries, after all.

"I'm happy as I am, and love my liberty too well to be in a hurry to give it up for any mortal man." 

"Amy's lecture did Laurie good, though, of course, he did not own it till long afterward. Men seldom do, for when women are the advisors, the lords of creation don't take the advice till they have persuaded themselves that it is just what they intended to do. Then they act upon it, and, if it succeeds, they give the weaker vessel half the credit of it. If it fails, they generously give her the whole."

"Very likely some Mrs Grundy will observe, "I don't believe it, boys will be boys, young men must sow their wild oats, and women must not expect miracles." I dare say you don't, Mrs. Grundy, but it's true nevertheless. Women work a good many miracles, and I have a persuasion that they may perform even that of raising the standard of manhood by refusing to echo such sayings."

I do so love the dry wit of the narration.

Good Wives is not so uplifting as its predecessor, probably because it's about becoming an adult. One of the saddest things about it is watching the girls give up their dreams. Bhaer causes Jo to stop writing, at least for a while, and Amy gives up her dream of being an artist simply because she thinks she'll never measure up to the classical greats.   A quick glance down the reviews on Goodreads will tell you that romance is a huge bone of contention. Personally, I don't think there are many books that are made or broken on the romance. I certainly don't think this is one of them. Would I have liked to see Jo and Laurie get together? Sure, but I don't feel like Amy and Laurie come out of left field. 

My issue is Bhaer.

Not just as Jo's love interest, but as a human being. He's a book snob, simply put. When she meets him, Jo has taken to writing sensation fiction (popular fiction of the day). From Bhaer's reaction, you'd think she was selling maps to the devil.

Jo gets dealt a bad hand in general in this novel. The only person who doesn't seem to want to change her is Laurie. Bhaer has issues with her writing and her speech. Beth wants her to become an entirely different person. By the time she becomes engaged to Bhaer, she's lonely and despondent: "Almost twenty-five, and nothing to show for it." I think that line is the most relatable in the entire book. I can't tell you how many times I've thought, "I've been on this earth for twenty years and achieved nothing."

Good Wives is bittersweet and difficult to read at times, but I think I did enjoy it. There's just something about this little part of 19th century America that is like a cup of hot chocolate on a cold winter's day.

 What's a classic you actually enjoy?

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Ten Books I Meant to Read in 2017 But...Ooh! A Butterfly!

If I'm getting to a Riordan book when its sequel is already out, you know I'm behind. So many books I was supposed to read in 2017. So little time. Here are ten of them. 

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish
1. Magnus Chase and the Ship of the Dead by Rick Riordan

Given that I didn't finish the second one until very early in the morning on the 31st of December 2017, this is a given. 

2. The Dark Prophecy by Rick Riordan

It's finally happened. He's finally writing them faster than I can read them. Clearly I'm a failure of a human being.


3. The Child by Sebastian Fitzek

I remember standing in The Works and reading the first chapter of this before I bought it. It seemed like it was going to be such a dark, fast-paced read.
4. All the Crooked Saints by Maggie Stiefvater

I managed to buy this a few days before it was supposed to come out...but I still haven't found the time to actually sit down and read it.


5. The Rest of The Maze Runner Books by James Dashner

I managed to get hold of a boxset of this series and then, in the fashion of boxset buying, I didn't finish reading it.

6. The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas

This and The Child both had the misfortune of being bought on the same day as Crooked Kingdom. Guess which novel took prioity? But I've been wanting to read this for a while, ever since I watched the (probably highly inaccurate, but shh) BBC adaptation.
Constance, asking all the right questions.
...Then it'll be just like every other week.
7. The Cormoran Strike Books by Robert Galbraith

I have GOT to stop watching TV adaptations of books!
8. The Mysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe

I think I can excuse myself where this one is concerned. Whilst I was looking for it as early as summer, I didn't actually get hold of it until Christmas.

9. The Rest of The Lunar Chronicles Books by Marissa Meyer

Sci-fi with a fairytale twist. I was already late to the party on this one. I guess now I'm even later.

10. A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab

...Okay, I have a small confession to make. I actually meant to read this one in 2016.


This is possibly the first time it's been easy to get to ten on one of these posts. 

(That is a sad statement on both of our lives.) 

Note: From next week, Top Ten Tuesday will be hosted at The Artsy Reader Girl instead. Thank you to everyone at The Broke and the Bookish for the stream of blog prompts you've provided to us all over the last few years.

Share the shame! What did you fail to get to in 2017?